“Our Father who art in Heaven….” I remember our nightly ritual, brushing teeth and bed time prayers with folded hands. I knew the prayer by heart. I could offer it up in my sleep, and often said it as my Father carried me to bed. As I got older, those words became more powerful and the practice of prayer more personal. I began to learn about the value of personal prayer. Coming from a charismatic background I’d seen prayers for healings yield lengthened limbs, and bid diseases away. I saw doors of opportunity open and relationships restored as a result of prayer.
“The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces
wonderful results.” (James 5:16b NLT)
Sometimes our prayer life can become routine or stale. I felt like my prayers were becoming laundry lists of petitions lacking sincerity. I decided to shake up my prayer life a little by reading some devotionals and old school prayer books and was blessed by how new the practice of prayer became.
Last Blog we discussed visual reminders to keep a focus on God’s presence, this blog I am going to share with you some things I’ve incorporated that keep me focused on prayer time and block out distractions
1 My prayer beads were a gift from my ministry partner. They are smooth and purple.
Sometimes I will just hold them as I pray each stone representing a different prayer of thanksgiving and I’ll go through them again with petitions…helps me balance my conversation with God. Sometimes I will just sit quietly and thumb through them allowing for silence for God to speak.
“The LORD is near to all them that call on him, to all that call on him in truth.”
2 I am known for writing the name on my hand of someone to pray for throughout the day. (YAY for Sharpies) I also keep a dry erase pen in my bathroom to write on my mirror and shower door so that I can be prayerful while I am getting ready for work. “A day hemmed in prayer is not likely to unravel” (Note: Do not confuse Sharpie w/dry erase. Much harder to get off mirror; lesson learned the hard way.)
“Be anxious for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.” (Philippians 4:6)
3 This past year, I have been making coloring part of my Sabbath. I will sit on my
back porch with soft music playing and chose a picture, while I color it, I lift my prayers to God. It makes prayers less rushed and more heartfelt. I find the contemplative quiet in between is so beneficial to the “Listening” part of prayer. It really is a two way conversation.
“Prayer is not monologue, but dialogue. Gods voice in response to mine is its most essential part.” ~ Andrew Murray
4 Journaling prayers has always been a part of my life, but I had gotten away from keeping record of answered prayer. Answers are such an incentive and encouragement to our prayer lives. The bible is full of answered prayers which show the Power of Prayer. Journaling our prayers gives us a gentle reminder that the God who answered us back then….is the same God we are seeking today.
5 These prayer stones were stones I intentionally
picked up on Lake Erie several years ago. I wrote topics on them in sharpie and set them in a basket. Throughout the day I would take one out and pray about that specific need and lay it on the table. At the end of the day the basket was empty and I had some great unstructured conversations with God. Often I will leave a particular stone out to remind me to pray about an issue that burdens me. It prompts me to be a “Prayer WARRIOR and not a prayer WORRIER”
I am super excited about the movie coming out called WAR ROOM – it looks fabulous and is centered on prayer. Check out the trailer here : http://warroomthemovie.com/
Prayer is part of a Christian’s daily walk. Prayer is connecting to the Creator. You don’t get to know someone by only spending one hour a week with them. Talking with God daily will increase your faith and your connection to him. We are called to pray without ceasing in Thessalonians 5:17.
My prayer is that you will find a method that works for you and that as you grow deeper in your relationship with the Savior; Prayer will become something you crave.
POINT TO PONDER: What can you incorporate into your prayer life to make it more meaningful to you and to the Lord?